There used to be a pitcher on the New York Mets named Doug Sisk. When Sisk first joined the Mets he threw an incredible sinker pitch that people simply could not hit. Batters could hardly hit his pitches past the infield. He gave up among the fewest home runs per inning pitched in the league. But there was one problem with his pitch, it moved a lot and therefore he had trouble keeping it in the strike zone. So batters learned not to swing and Sisk started to have problems loading the basses by walking batters. The Met fans started to boo Sisk relentlessly. The booing became such a problem that the manager would try not to use Sisk while the team was playing at home so that the home crowd would not be able to boo him. At one point the joke was that the hardest job in the world was being Doug Sisk and pitching at Shea. I even heard someone say something about putting Sisk’s uniform on and taking the mound being a test of bravery! (Actually I was a big Doug Sisk fan and I took a lot of heat for it!)
That being said I have to say that today there is a job that is much more difficult than pitching at Shea Stadium in a Doug Sisk uniform…and that job is occupied by many people! What’s the job you ask…it is being a television news reader on CNN! What’s so hard about that you ask? I’ll tell you. I think the most difficult task in the world for a human being is to come out on TV every single day and keep a straight face as you report the pathetically un-newsworthy issues, in depth, one after another as you try and pretend that you are a journalist partaking in journalism!
Of course CNN is not the only organization to hire such skilled employees. MSNBC has the most skilled reporters and wins the top spot simply by sheer volume when it comes to treating issues like Anna Nicole Smith as if it was vital news worthy of lengthy panel discussions. And FOX News, well let’s just say they have an even more difficult job because on top of all the pretending they have to appear as if they are not biased! Ha ha ha, that’s funny; and they keep straight faces! Amazing!
Today the CNN crew did a great job because they had some really tough transitions to work through. You see I watched one top of the hour headline segments and one segment on the upcoming stories for the next hour and during both of these segments the AM CNN team did a marvelous job keeping from laughing. This was not easy because the first segment contained two headlines; one being the Iraq War and the other being Brittney Spears return to the stage, and the second segment contained two issues where one was the Iraq war and the other was about paying for you wedding when you get jilted at the alter. In between these two tough transitions they held a serious discussion on a new report that shows that left handed women have shorter life spans than right handed women. There was no real news during this session but the three on air clowns chatted and speculated about this bombshell issue for w a while. So you can add improvisation to their skill set! Comedy Central has nothing on these people!
I would be shirking my responsibilities as a media analyst if I neglected to give CBS News some credit for their straight faced tradition of reporting three headlines during a commercial break every Sunday night during 60 Minutes. You see every single week during 60 minutes a newscaster comes on and reports three headlines and every single week one of the headlines is about the movie box office returns for that weekend. The box office returns for some reason are reported during every single Sunday night airing of 60 Minutes and every single Monday, to the general public, on most â€œnewsâ€ programs. I can only imagine that the only thought in the head of the person reporting such news is â€œdoes anybody notice how stupid it is that we report this random industry statistic every week?â€ But then again I do not think many thoughts actually go through the heads of these people.
So I think that the men and women of the TV news industry are either performing one of the most difficult tasks on the planet or their brain function is so low that they don’t even see the humor in what they are doing. Hmmm…now that I mention that…uh…I guess you can forget about all the praise I just cast on these people. So…um…never mind. Think about it!